Quicksilver Messenger Service – Written by John “Chinook” Garcia, Houseless Native American of Portland, Oregon.

They poisoned my sweet waters

cut down my green trees

the food they feed my children is

the cause of their disease

my world is slowly fallen down

and the air not good to breath

and those of us who care enough

have to do something, Dad, what you

gonna do about me

I’m working in your factories, I study

in your schools, I fill your

penitentiaries and your military too

and though you may be stronger

now my time will surely come

around cause you keep adding to

my numbers and shut out people down

Dad, what you gonna do about me

what about me, Dad, what ya

gonna do about me I ain’t looking

for no more trouble but…

And I feel like a stranger

in the land where I was born,

and I live like an outlaw and I am

always on the run

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Green Haiku

Three plants in a pot

Sharing the sun and water

Surface growth varies

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Sandy Knows (a random poem from college)

If you’ve written a letter to

an old friend,

or the president,

you ought not

you ought not

ought not to send it

if either is smart,

they can take the weight of your fingerprints

to determine

how long you had


to write sincerely,


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Pearl City I.

I see his skull. Shadows

in the eyes. A moment


where sun flops on trees. Fish


for the breeze. Nothing

is never


far enough. Nothing ever

too close. Nobody loves


just one.

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Dr. Seuss Had Bad Days

What if I live a life so
impossibly small
that hardly a soul
notices me at all…

If I crawl, hardly seen
like a meek little ant,
try to picture my life.
You can’t! No you can’t!

What if I pass along
all the rest of my days
without anyone privvy
to my cooped up ways

til I’ve hardly a hair
on my wrinkled old head?
I lay down in my bed
and I’m dead! Then I’m dead!

Or what if I dreamed
an impossible dream
and worked so hard to reach
it I split at my seams?

I tried hard and I failed
tried and failed, tried again
and accomplished that dream!
Well, what then? Say what then?

Do I find another dream
quickly, now? Find it now?
Do I just live in peace
but how? Just tell me how?

This is not poetry
saying you shouldn’t try
This is not poetry
saying storybooks lie

This is just poetry
meant to get at the stuff
that goes on in my head
when my head’s had enough!

Of its own clusterfuffle
It’s riggamerott!
The jumbled up jambles
crantorpously flot!


We all have our dreams
that we all want to try.
And we all live to be,
do, and see, then to die.

They say live in the moment
but you must plan ahead
They say make your own rules,
but then do ours instead.

They say that it’s best
to try to be content,
then say reach for the stars.
I’m not sure what is meant

by the mixed messages
we put out in the world.
So I bite at my nails
with my lip slightly furled.

I feel itchy and ansy like
I can’t sit still
Like I must do something
and I will! Yes I will!

But what, and but why,
and then what after that?
So I sit and blink
and I stare at my cat.

Oh how lucky the animals
surely must be
just to meow and to lay
and to sit and to be.

Not a care in the world
not a purpose to need.
Animals don’t cut themselves
just to see if they bleed.

Animals don’t use their
energy trying to find
a purpose to make them
secure in their minds.

They play when they play,
then they’re bored so they nap,
and they eat and they crap.
Eat and crap! Eat and crap!

So am I truly better?
I guess I can create,
build a change for the future,
and do something great…

But if I don’t then
am I like some human waste?
They say love thyself, then

accomplish! Post haste!

Post haste!

But I can’t and I’m done
and I’m ready to rest.
I gave this day my all
and I gave my real best.

What if I leave my rhymes
in notebooks on my shelf
and then nobody reads them
have I wasted myself?

If it adds up to nothing?
Oh well, oh well.

If I die in my sleep?
Then farewell, farewell…


I don’t want my poetry
to make you sad.
Sometimes we let things
out when we’re feeling bad.

If you look at the
earth from way above at night
all you see is the land
and the lights! Oh the light!

Maybe that’s just the thing
then, that we all must do.
If I keep giving my light
and I give it to you,

and you give it to someone,
who gives it right back
and we all start to glow,
then we won’t feel a lack.

We’ll keep glowing and
glowing with whoever we
are, just burning as long
as we can like a star.

We can sleep with a smirk
and awake with a smile
and there’d be space
for our sadness, at least

once in a while.

But when your head is all muddled
and things don’t feel right
just pan out to the heavens
and remember the light.

You may not feel good
about your least good ways
and you might be having one
of those ramtuqfurous days

It might make you feel
better if you speak in rhyme!
Or you might just need hugs
or just patience and time.

If you’ve lost all your purpose,
then be just to be.
If you can’t do things or see
things, just listen to me:

for I promise you this
just as sure as I write:
you might do good tomorrow
you might… yes you might…

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I Want My Tombstone To Say

She lived diligently.

And always with that look in her eye…

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Last Night

Sitting on the floor

In the back at the open mic

My back against a closed door

The music hits my ears like a pile

Of tin cans. You hit my soul like a deep

Tissue massage. I never asked you to be

Good to me. For crying out loud, I never asked you.

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This Haiku

Languaaaaaaaage. Damn. People. Gorgeous…. but then you see 

The indescribable.

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Sonnets for Herbie

In honor of National Pet Day Here’s some sonnets for my bunny:

I watched bunnies on YouTube for a year.

I read every little thing that I could find.

And as the winter’s peak was drawing near,

My cold and empty bedroom stayed on my mind.

I found you on the OHS website.

On a break at work, you caught my eye.

I felt right then you were the bun for me,

But found it odd since I did not know why…

Then something happened that was rather funny.

I thought I might go see you the next day.

A lady I had before asked for some more Bunny 

care info sent a message that would say:
If you find a bun you’d like to know,

Go meet them, before someone else adopts them.

And in my gut I knew had to go

That very evening, all my plans were dropped, then

I bussed two hours just to look and see

If “Herbie the Dentist” was meant to be for me.
Though I don’t know who gave you that name for boys,

I’d watched that movie just the other day.

With Herbie in the land of misfit toys,

And found you so endearing right away.

So I bussed to unfamiliar parts of town.

And trekked about a mile in the cold.

Waited hours for my turn to come around.

The spontaneity of the night felt bold.

They took me to a room of buns to pick

The two I’d meet and see if we connect.

And when I held you in my arms, so quick

I saw in our eyes something I wanted to protect. 

You looked up at me with a gaze so gentle and nice.

Right then I would have given any price.
I thought I would go home to think about it

A pet is a big endeavor to take on.

But the lady asked which bunny I wanted.

Before I knew it I’d signed and adopted one.

I stepped out the door just glowing from within

An energy and love rarely felt in life.

Carried you a mile in the icy wind,

Longing to keep you safe from any strife.

We rode the bus to the pet store and ubered home

With hundreds of dollars of bunny supplies in tow

And somehow I felt already deep in my bones

You’d bring joy in more ways than I could possibly know.

And each new day you grow and hop and dance

I’m glad I followed my gut and took a chance.
Happy Pet Day Herbie McNerby Derby!

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A Haiku After a Long Time

Some people can’t live

with just pretend, or even

remote–chaos some

People need it right

There in the living room to

prove their life the rule

Instead of the exception.

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